Craven Stakes Day. Excellent racing at HQ today, as was the case yesterday as well. Qabala was impressive the way she won the Nell Qwyn Stakes. She looks like a horse ready-made for the Rowley Mile.
But the biggest lasting impressing was created in the opening maiden that saw Maqsad and Twist’n Shake fight out a dramatic battle to the line, as well as finishing a long way before the rest. Both fillies look exciting prospects for the season ahead.
Betting wise, I’m not really interested in Newmarket today. But Beverly offers an intriguing card, if not quite the same quality. The handicaps are interesting puzzles to solve for those who are into that sort of thing.
4.00 Beverly: Class 4 Handicap, 7.5f
This is a pretty competitive and open race but I feel my selection Jackamundo can have a big say if in it to win it. He’s a big drifter this morning which is a concern, though there are plenty of positives as well.
Jackamundo looks the type to improve as a 3-year-old after a fair juvenile campaign, culminating in victory on handicap debut. Visually it was quite an impressive performance when he showed adversity to find a way through the field and get his head in front late, but early enough to win by a quarter of a lengths.
Gelded over the winter, his seasonal comeback run at Musselburgh was fair when the market expected him to run really well, though excuses can be made for a 6th place finish in a race where things didn’t quite pan out for him.
The slightly further trip today is sure to suit, the fast ground appears ideal as well, though the draw isn’t ideal and whether his racing style suits Beverly remains to be seen. A mark off 72 is realistic and offers opportunity, on the other hand.
10pts win – Jackamundo @ 18/1 MB
5.10 Beverly: Class 5 Handicap, 1m 4f
It still pains me thinking back to the 22nd February when Gendarme as my 25/1 selection was beaten by a nose on the line. Can he make amends as an equally whopping price today?
The 4-year-old gelding looks hopeless judged by an 11-0-1 record. But as mentioned back then, it still applies very much today:
the majority of his runs on the All-Weather over the winter were quite promising, as he wasn’t too far beaten on most occasions, and those forms, to large extend have worked out well.
The most recent run at Lingfield, when attempting to follow up from his runner-up performance, albeit only finishing 7th and nearly seven lengths beaten, he was right there for a long time, setting a good pace from the front against hot opposition – for that class.
Given Gendarme he has ran to consistent RPR’s around his current mark and achieved a significantly higher career highest TS rating less than a year ago on turf, a return to this surface could bring out some improvement also. I feel there is a win just around the corner – hopefully today is the day.
10pts win – Gendarme @ 21/1 MB
6.10 Beverly: Class 5 Handicap, 8.5 furlongs
Still a maiden, though, Kylie Rules is one of the more unlucky ones. The filly has changed yards recently and goes to post first time for Ruth Carr today which is also her seasonal return.
The filly has dropped to a really handy mark if fit and ready to go today. She’s ran well fresh in the past, so that isn’t necessarily a worry. Kylie Rules also achieved a TS rating of 72 and RPR of 72 last season, suggesting a mark of 60 is well within her realms.
Her career-best came over the 8.5f trip last season at Hamilton – albeit on soft ground, though she ran perfectly fine on much fast ground as well. This looks like an ideal opportunity today to finally get off the mark.
10pts win – Kylie Rules @ 10/1 PP